Meta to Block Facebook News in Australia Amid Issues on Fees

On Friday, Meta Platforms plans on blocking news content from Facebook in Australia if the government charges licensing fees.

According to its Regional Policy Director, Mia Garlick, all options regarding the restrictions on Australians from sharing news are considered. This move is to avoid paying fees. She added that there are several channels that people can use as news sources.

Moreover, Garlick said Meta was waiting on Canberra’s decision about applying an untested 2021 law. This law would enable the government to set the fees American tech companies pay media outlets for links.

The feedback received significantly indicated that the firm would choose the same hardline approach in Australia as it did in Canada. In 2023, the same situation occurred when it introduced similar laws.

On the other hand, after entering the law, Meta made deals with the nation’s media heads, including News Corp. However, it was mentioned that it will not renew the arrangements after 2024.

Meanwhile, Australia’s assistant treasurer was left to decide whether to intervene and push Facebook to pay fees for news content.

Nine Entertainment and Seven West Media announced they were laying off staff and foreseeing revenue loss after Meta deals expire.

US Appeals Court Revives Action on Meta Hiring Bias

On Thursday, a US appeals court revived a proposed class action from a software engineer on Meta Platforms. He claims the company refused to hire him as their hiring preference favors foreign workers paid with lower wages.

The San Francisco-based US Court of Appeals mentioned that a Civil War-era law restricts contract discrimination against its citizens. This move reverses a California federal judge’s dismissal of Purushothaman Rajaram’s allegations.

Rajaram, a naturalized US citizen, claims Meta passes over American workers for jobs, leaning toward cheaper visa recipients.

The Facebook owner denied wrongdoing, stating Rajaram failed to provide evidence that the company discriminated against US workers.

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